Real Climate [Gavin Schmidt] Response To The Climate Science Post “Comments On Real Climate’s Post “FAQ on climate models: Part II”

Further Reply By Gavin Schmidt to this Climate Science posting [his reply to my comment #150].

[Response:Roger, If you think that accusing people of being in a conspiracy to defend the IPCC and imply that disagreeing with you means that people are actively trying to “mislead” the public, is ‘constructive interaction’, you might want to buy a new dictionary. The NRC meeting I attended was a discussion of whether a new report on solar-climate interactions would be helpful for the NRC to do. Most presentations focussed very specifically on solar-climate links. It remains a puzzle to me why you thought the proposed report would be something related to the IPCC report at all. Thus your characterisation of that meeting was, frankly, extremely partial and unfair to the participants and agency reps who attended. Your accusation that I misrepresented that meeting in the comment above is ludicrous.

As for your comments on the above FAQ, I have not yet responded to your comments through lack of time. Hopefully, I will be able to in the future, perhaps when I don’t have to respond to juvenile accusations about my integrity. To be clear, I have the utmost respect for your body of work over your career, but your current style of engagement and constant accusatory tone online is not conducive to ‘constructive interaction’. If that is your aim, you might want to rethink your tactics. - gavin]

I am only going to respond to the one substantive issue that Gavin raises; he writes

“The NRC meeting I attended was a discussion of whether a new report on solar-climate interactions would be helpful for the NRC to do. Most presentations focussed very specifically on solar-climate links. It remains a puzzle to me why you thought the proposed report would be something related to the IPCC report at all.”

To refute Gavin’s claim, I cut and paste below from the strawman document that was circulated prior to the meeting and which we discussed at the NRC meeting; it reads [ the strawman is reproduced in its entirety in Protecting The IPCC Turf - There Are No Independent Climate Assessments Of The IPCC WG1 Report Funded And Sanctioned By The NSF, NASA Or The NRC.]

“In order to understand the solar influence on climate and the atmosphere, it is essential to also understand the contributions of volcanic aerosols, as well as anthropogenic greenhouse gases and tropospheric aerosols, and other human influences such as land use changes, all of which contribute to the observed climate. Furthermore, because there is growing evidence that responses of the climate system to these various influences likely engages and modifies existing circulation patterns, it is necessary to understand pervasive climate processes (e.g., ENSO, NAO, QBO) and centers of action, and their responses to radiative forcings.

Also in need of clarification is the current wide disparity regarding how to achieve and quantify attribution. IPCC studies have primarily utilized simulations by general circulation models, which thus require that the models be sufficiently understood and validated to engender confidence that simulated global and regional fingerprints are realistic. An array of results using various statistical analyses of observations suggests that deficiencies of the climate models may compromise their ability to simulate responses to small radiative forcings, such as by solar variability (Stott et al.; Camp and Tung).

The study under consideration would augment and advance two recent NRC reports on 1) Radiative forcing and 2) Responses, by assessing how the extended complexities of the climate system likely precludes such a separation of forcings and responses, especially in the case of solar variability. A third NRC report assessing surface and atmospheric temperature trends is also relevant since the atmospheric responses to solar forcing becomes increasingly stronger, relative to anthropogenic (and other) influences, at increasing heights above the surface, so that the attribution of anthropogenic change in the troposphere and stratosphere is unlikely to be the same as that of surface temperature. In addressing the regional and altitudinal, as well as global signatures, of climate change the study would also serve to compile current understanding that will be relevant for the next IPCC (for which regional change is expected to be a priority).”

Gavin’s statement, with respect to our NRC committee, that “It remains a puzzle to me why you thought the proposed report would be something related to the IPCC report at all” is quite astonishing. Gavin misinterpreted the charge to our committee by narrowly reading its title Detection and Attribution of the Solar Influence on Climate Change”, instead of also reading the strawman proposal to be discussed by the Committee.

I do respect Gavin’s scientific contributions, and I look forward to the answers to the questions that I presented in my weblog Comments On Real Climate’s Post “FAQ on climate models: Part II”. However, Gavin, so far, is not following the scientific courtesy of constructively debating the issues.

Original Climate Science Post

Gavin Schmidt has responded to the Climate Science request for further information on the Q&A he completed on climate modeling.  His comment is below.

Quite frankly, I am very disappointed by his lack of professional courtesy. He also clearly wants to avoid answering the scientific questions posed in response to his Q&A. He has also decided to misrepresent the NRC meeting.

[Gavin Schmidt Response [see Comment #148]:The balance between justifiable criticism and unjustifiable comments is a fine line (and assessing it is a full time job). Given this is only a part time gig, there will be times when judgment calls go different ways at different times. On balance, I’m going to allow Bloom’s comments to stand (along with your critique) because he alludes to a valid point – not that behaviour or attitude determines the correctness of ones argument (it doesn’t), but that the way one behaves towards colleagues is a big determinant of how much time people will devote to addressing your concerns. Roger’s post on the NRC meeting was very odd, full of unverifiable and untrue suppositions of motives of the people there, and which did not reflect the substantive conversations that actually took place there (which concerned solar impacts on climate, not evaluating the IPCC). It is valid to point this out, as it is valid to note that people need to choose who to interact with (given the limited time everyone has). Respect is very much a two way street. – gavin]

I have tried repeatedly to constructively interact with Real Climate and Gavin Schmidt, in particular, but my interactions with him at the NRC meeting and through his blog comments clearly demonstrate that he is not interested in scientific discourse. He only supports discussing viewpoints that agree with his, and both undertakes himself, and supports ad hominin attacks by others, on those who differ with him in their scientific perspective.  

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